At the 50th CARIFTA Games Track and Field April 7-10 in Nassau, Bahamas athletes Antwon Walkin and Love Joseph collectively brought back a triad of bronze medals. These medals were achieved one per day of the competition and made the entire Turks and Caicos Islands proud.
Antwon Walkin won two bronze medals at the games, one in Shot Put (6kg) and the other in Discus Throw. In the Shot put (6kg) Walkin threw 15.24m, which is an improvement on his personal best from the JAAA CARIFTA Trials in 2022 where he threw 14.49m.
This comes on the heels of Walkin breaking the National Record for Men’s Discus Throw in March earlier this year at the ISSA/Grace Kennedy Boys and Girls Championships, in Kingston Jamaica. At the competition also known as ‘Champs’, he threw 50.74m. He then broke the record for the second time at the 50th CARIFTA Games in Nassau Bahamas, throwing a progressive 52.25m.
On the Track, Love Joseph is the new rising star who clocked 9:37:46 to take the third-place spot in the U17 Boys 3000m on the second day. According to the Turks and Caicos Islands Amateur Athletics Association (TCAAA), this time was a new Turks and Caicos Islands National record for the U17 Boys 3000m.
Earlier in the competition Joseph placed fifth in the U17 Boys 1500m and achieved a new personal best of 4:15.33 (Previous PB 4:38.18). This time was also a new Turks and Caicos Islands National record for the U17 Boys 1500m as verified by the TCAAA. Joseph went into the race as the second-slowest seed, hence finishing 5th is a great achievement.
To celebrate the accomplishments of these athletes, the Turks and Caicos Islands Sports Commission along with Honourable Rachel Taylor Minister of Education, Youth, Sports and Social Services, put on a Celebration breakfast on April 13th. Present at this event was Hon. Rachel Taylor, Director of Sports Jarrett Forbes, TCAAA President Ms Edith Skippings, TCAAA General Secretary Rosalie Ingham, Love Joseph and parents along with Antwon Walkin and parents.
The athletes had a chance to share their experiences in preparation and during competition while expressing their gratitude to the people of the Turks and Caicos Islands who showed bountiful support.
The Turks and Caicos Islands Sports Commission has recognised the talent of the medalists and has set aside provisions to develop the athletes.
The Director of Sports Mr Jarrett Forbes shared, “The Sports Commission has an Athlete Assistance Programme which contributes to the development of national athletes with exceptional performance, through athlete assistance grants. The performance displayed by Love Joseph and Antwon Walkin at the recent CARIFTA Games is a great display of their potential in the sport of Track and Field and the Government is committed to nurturing those talents. Athletes who are approved for the Athlete Assistance Programme may be carded in three categories: Senior International, Senior Regional, and Developmental. Antwon and Love will both be awarded Development Cards to assist with their training and preparation for a twelve (12) month period.”